California is among a handful of states that have been sued by a former carpet cleaner who claims he was discriminated against for his race, according to a report published Monday by The New York Times.
Stanley and his partner, who were also black, sued in California Superior Court on behalf of the two men, claiming they were discriminated against because they didn’t work as hard as white carpet cleaners.
Stanleys lawyers, Michael Cohen, and John G. Smith of the law firm Cohen & Smith, filed the lawsuit in August, alleging the carpet cleaners were denied promotions and promotions were made on the basis of race.
The suit claims the company, which also employs black workers, had to spend $2.5 million to hire new black employees and to improve the experience for the African American employees, according the Times.
The carpet cleaners, who worked at the San Diego-area company for two years, were also denied training for years.
The couple were joined in the suit by their daughter and other family members, who are white.
The plaintiffs claim that their employer retaliated against them because they worked as hard and longer than white carpet workers, and because of their African American heritage.
The complaint says the company’s discrimination was not limited to a single complaint but stemmed from decades of racist practices.
Stan, who has two children, said in the lawsuit that the carpet cleaning business was “a source of pride for me, as a father, grandfather, and grandfather of three young children,” and that he is grateful for the opportunities he and his co-workers enjoyed.
Stan was hired by Stanleys carpet cleaners in 2010, and the suit says he started working for the company after a few months in the service industry.
The lawsuit was filed against the company and its owners, Stanleys Inc., the parent company of the carpet and other cleaning companies.
Stan & Co. is based in Orange County, Calif., according to its website.
The company was formed in 1980, according a spokesman for the California Attorney General’s office.
The newspaper said the suit did not say how much money the two plaintiffs would be seeking, but Cohen and Smith wrote that Stanleys was “proud to be an employee of Stanleys” and that they were seeking “an undisclosed amount of damages.”